A wise Professor asked me why I thought there were so few criminal cases of corruption in the UK. My first thought was that, “It’s because there is no Corruption Squad”. I looked into it some more and discovered that it was not quite as simple as that. I had to rope in some experts to cover things of which I was not quite sure. I am very grateful to Gary Walters, a specialist corruption investigator, Richard Gould former head of investigations at the UK Serious Fraud Office and Professor of Criminology at Manchester University, Nick Lord. I had thought it would be a quick blog, based on my own years of experience, but this article took ages to write.
I had already done a couple of blogs for the University of Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption. These were discussing the Law Commission’s review of the UK’s excellent confiscation regime. The first, published in December discussed bribery and asset recovery, the second looked at the alleged backlog of unpaid confiscation orders, suggesting that they are an accounting artefact that should be written off. Then the Professor asked me the question about corruption.
This piece on corruption looks at how corruption is viewed by Britain’s investigative agencies. In my view the system is rigged against corruption being investigated or prosecuted. The Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption said my argument was too long for a blog and I am delighted that they promoted it to “Working Paper”. Here it is, I hope that you like it.